A missing mini-submarine near the wreckage of the Titanic off Newfoundland

HALIFAX – Search ships and planes from the United States and Canada were scouring the southern Newfoundland area on Monday, searching for a mini-submarine that went missing while diving to examine the wreck of the Titanic.

The Center conjoint the coordination of sauvetage in Halifax a confirmed dans a courier qu’il available to reçu ne demande de la Garde côtière America peu 21h, dimanche, for participer aux recherches d’un submersible porté disparu in environment 700 km or sudanese Saint Jean.

Lieutenant Commander Lynn Hickey said a Canadian Air Force Aurora and Canadian Coast Guard vessel Cobbett Hobson are participating in the US Coast Guard-led search in Boston.

The US Coast Guard tweeted that one of its C-130 Hercules aircraft participated in the search, along with a P-8 Poseidon, which can detect the presence of submerged submarines.

Authorities said the five-man crew aboard the 6.4-meter-high (6.4-meter) mini-submarine began descending on Sunday morning and its surface vessel, the Polar Prince, lost contact about an hour and 45 minutes after the dive began.

OceanGate Expeditions confirmed to the Associated Press the search for its submarine, which is carrying five people.

“We are extremely grateful for the extensive assistance we have received from multiple government agencies and deep-sea companies in our efforts to restore contact with the submarine,” the company said in a statement. We are working on the safe return of the crew.”

David Concannon, a consultant to the company, said Oceangate lost contact with the submarine Sunday morning. He said in an email to the Associated Press Monday afternoon that he had a 96-hour supply of oxygen.

“Now, 32 hours have passed since the immersion,” specified Mr. Concannon at the time. He said officials are working to bring a remote-controlled car to the site as quickly as possible, capable of descending to a depth of 6,000 metres.

“There are five people on the submarine, two crew members and three mission specialists,” Concannon said. Contact was lost as the submarine approached the Titanic’s stern. There is currently a multinational effort to bring resources to the wreck site that could perform a salvage mission.”

Action Aviation confirmed that its boss, British businessman Hamish Harding, was among the tourists aboard the mini-submarine. Company director Mark Butler told the Associated Press that the unit departed on Friday.

“There is still time to facilitate the rescue mission, and there is equipment on board to survive this event,” Butler said.

Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Faure tweeted that he was thinking of those affected and hoped the US Coast Guard would find the submarine and its occupants “very soon”.

“Newfoundland and Labrador has a historical connection to the wreck of the Titanic,” he said. Tourists leave our port to visit the site off our coast.”

The Maritime Institute of Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador said in a statement that one of its students, who worked in the summer on the ship “Polar Prince” was not on the submarine.

Tours that include “paying tourists”

In 2021, OceanGate Expeditions begins what has been advertised as an “annual voyage” documenting the deterioration of the “unsinkable ship” that struck an iceberg and sank, in 1912. Only about 700 of the approximately 2,200 passengers and crew. He survived drowning.

The wreckage of the Titanic, found in 1985, is slowly being eaten away by bacteria attacking the minerals, and some experts have predicted that the ship could be gone within decades.

Describing its first expedition, OceanGate said that in addition to archaeologists and marine biologists, about 40 “paying tourists” took turns using sonar equipment and performing other tasks in the mini-submarine. The first group of tourists funded the expedition by contributing between $100,000 and $150,000 each.

According to the “OceanGate” website, the back-to-back expeditions are organized into eight-day expeditions. The money collected from the “tourists” should go to research on the Titanic. The website says the mini submarine can dive to a maximum depth of 3,800 metres.

That expedition was scheduled to depart from St. John in early May and complete in late June, according to a court document the company filed in April with a US district court in Virginia, which presides over Titanic cases. OceanGate said in the court filing that the submarine, called Titan, had a “comfortable margin of safety”.

OceanGate said Titan is made of “titanium-filament carbon fibers” and has proven to be “resistant to the enormous pressures of the ocean depths.” The company told the court that Titan’s hatch is “the largest of any deep-diving submarine” and that its technology provides “unparalleled visibility” into the ocean depths.

Chris Barry, a retired rear admiral in the British Navy, told Sky News the rescue operation was “a very difficult operation”.

“The real nature of the sea floor is very undulating. The Titanic itself lies in a trench. There is a lot of debris around it. So trying to disperse with specific sonar and target the area you want to search, with another submarine, would be very difficult indeed.”


With information from the Associated Press

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